Inside Out: Thailand

ThailandBy Ellen Bee

A regular column concerning business in an emerging market, and its relationship with Japan.


Inside Out: Africa

Boy in AfricaBy Gordon Jones -- As China moves into the continent, how is Japan positioned? When former Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda addressed the crowd of dignitaries at this year’s Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TI-CAD-IV), he did so with bold predictions and promises. “In the future, Africa will become a powerful engine driving the growth of the world,” Fukuda said as he stood before the dignitaries of 52 African countries and a multitude of international organizations.


InsideOut: Business in Cambodia

CambodiaBy Gordon Jones -- A regular column concerning business in an emerging market, and its relationship with Japan -- The Kingdom of Cambodia, wedged uneasily between its larger and historically expansionist neighbors, Vietnam and Thailand, has a beauty and smile which belies its dark past. But scars remain and recent decades have been a difficult struggle to promote recovery and reconciliation.


Inside Out: Business in Peru

Peru StampBy Evan Jaqua with Timm Tuttle -- J@pan Inc’s column concerning business conditions in an emerging market -- Today, Peru is under the radar for many businesses around the world, including in faraway Japan. Unfortunate, considering that after centuries of difficulties stretching from the Conquistador era through the troubled 1980s, the Peru of today is undergoing a true renaissance, with startling economic growth, low inflation, growing integration with the world economy, and the firm establishment of a stable democratic government. Not surprisingly, the US Commercial Service describes the country as “...the hidden commercial gem of Latin America—a diverse, export- driven economy characterized by open markets and fiscal prudence.”


Inside Out: Business in India

Dusty Street in IndiaBy Anna Kitanaka -- J@pan Inc’s column concerning business conditions in an emerging market -- As the opposition to British rule in India mounted at the turn of the 20th century, the populace (second-largest in the world) began to push for self-rule and total independence. The outcome was a closely guarded society, eager to administer the deathblow to colonialism by cutting off inroads for foreign investment in the country. Nevertheless, following WWII, India pursued capitalist economic policies, flanked by some of the oldest financial institutions in Asia, such as the Bombay Stock Exchange, founded in 1875. Becoming one of the hotspots for foreign soul-seeking tourists during the hippy era, India remained firmly on the map as a cheap tourist destination.


Inside Out: Business in Russia

Russian FlagBy Teagan Miller -- J@pan Inc’s column concerning business conditions in an emerging market -- A recent Morgan Stanley report ranked Russia as the “top emerging market” based on rising oil prices and a forecasted increase in GDP for 2008 to 6.7%, up from 6% in February. The report stated, “Russia will remain well insulated from the current global growth slowdown and domestic demand should remain strong.” So why is the Russian market predicted to be so profitable?


Inside Out: Business in Venezuela

VenezuelaVenezuelaBy Anna Kitanaka & Peter Harris -- Venezuela is one of the most resource-rich nations in the world yet it is also one of the most politically risky countries today. Doing business there is not something that investors or enterprises do without careful consideration. Western media doesn’t do the country any favors with its portrayal of President Hugo Chávez as a US-hating communist intent on nationalizing every major industry in the country. And, they are not simply making this up—Chávez has been on a nationalization streak and doesn’t hide his contempt for Washington. However, probing a bit deeper, Fox News’ report of his “thievery,” “immorality” and “leading his people down a pathway to hell” is a little misleading. That is not to say that there isn’t a good deal of risk involved in doing business in Venezuela, but a look at the profits that some are managing to make there gives a fuller picture than the Western media’s reactionary hyperbole.


Inside Out: Doing Business in Vietnam

VietnamVietnamBy Peter Harris -- J@pan Inc’s column concerning business opportunities outside of Japan. -- One of those to praise Vietnam’s entry into the WTO was Masayuki Karasawa, Chief Representative of the Japan Bank for International Cooperation in Vietnam who heralded the accession as a positive moment for global commerce. And little wonder given that Japan is one of the largest foreign investors in the country with its FDI totaling over US$8.8 billion and bilateral trade between the two countries reaching up to US$10 billion.


Inside Out: The Realities of Virtual Business

Second Life: how far do the possibilities go?By Peter Harris

J@pan Inc’s column concerning business possibilities outside of Japan

“Open a nightclub, sell jewelry, become a land speculator; the choice is yours to make.” No, not the text of one of Donald Trump’s entrepreneur seminars, but the opening invitation on the business page of virtual community Second Life’s website. Increasingly, Second Life (SL) is becoming a place where businesses naturally want to extend their operations to, or entrepreneurs decide to try out one of their latest ideas.


Inside Out: China is Big, China is Small

Source: China KnowledgeChina KnowledgeBy Tiger Tong
J@pan Inc’s column concerning investment outside of Japan takes a look at China’s city ranking.

Rising costs and intensified competition in Beijing, Shanghai and other coastal cities have caused many investors to shift their attention to other parts of China. Though China is big, savvy investors who scrutinize the map of China might find their options limited as they plan their next step.



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